Bristol SU was alive with the sounds of the Sea, Mountains and Space! 


160 young musicians from primary schools across Bristol came together on Tuesday 12th June to take part in the Primary Orchestra Programme Showcase.

The Orchestra Showcase, a collaboration between the University of Bristol and Bristol Plays Music, provides the opportunity for children to perform together in an orchestral ensemble.  This year they worked on the music of Moana; visiting the heart of the North in Sibelius’ Finlandia; and ventured into space with John William’s epic Star Wars score of The Force Awakens/Rogue One.  The music has been especially arranged by Claire Alsop, Senior Associate Teacher in the Department of Music and Bristol alumnus (BA 1997).

The workshop was led by Phil Dixon, teacher of music and music technology and composer-in-residence from St Mary Redcliffe and Temple School and University of Bristol alumnus (MA 2002).

Dr Marina Gall, Head of PGCE Music at the University of Bristol’s School of Education, said: “Bristol is one of the UK’s most musical cities and the workshop enables young people from all backgrounds to be inspired and have fun.  The day will be a great opportunity for the children to experience playing within a large orchestral setting, and for our secondary music teacher trainees to develop their skills in working with younger children.”

Kirsten Cunningham, Assistant Head teacher at Horfield CEVC Primary School and  Bristol alumnus (MA 1997), said: “The Primary Orchestra Programme enriches music making for Bristol children beyond their instrumental lessons and enables them to be part of a bigger musical picture as part of a symphony orchestra, challenging them to achieve a higher standard of playing.  It’s a great experience for children, students and tutors and, most importantly, great fun!”

The orchestra day finished with a performance for parents and carers.